Thanks to all the readers, reviewers, booksellers, friends, family, and fellow publishers who came by the Astra House booth to greet us at the 2021 Brooklyn Book Festival. It was a beautiful weekend in Brooklyn, and it felt wonderful to connect with this part of our literary community in real life and in the fresh air.
On Saturday, Children’s Day, author Lenora Todaro visited the booth to sign copies of her new picture book Sea Lions in the Parking Lot. The Astra staff and their families loved meeting readers of all ages who love and appreciate children’s books. Some of the littlest Astras were present and excited to hand out galleys of forthcoming titles as well as exclusive Astra swag.
Lucky readers who came by on Sunday afternoon got a chance to chat with authors Derecka Purnell (Becoming Abolitionists), Melissa Lozada-Oliva (Dreaming of You), Okezie Nwọka (God of Mercy), and Iván Monalisa Ojéda (Las Biuty Queens) about police abolition, transgender and drag queen sex workers in New York City, alternate visions of postcolonial Africa, the power of poetry and prose, the life and death of Selena Quintanilla-Perez, and more. With their beautiful books before them and the New York Supreme Court and statue of Christopher Columbus looming menacingly in the background, these amazing authors helped us to present our vision for the future of publishing for an international community.
Those who stopped by the booth any time during the Brooklyn Book Festival got to chat with members of our staff! We had great conversations with our passionate local publishing community, including journalists and editors at a number of literary magazines; staffers at imprints like Feminist Press, FSG, Radix Media, Verso Books, SoHo Press, and Flatiron Books; members of the National Book Foundation and PEN America; and booksellers from Community Books, Mil Mundos, Greenlight Books, and Book Club Bar. Thanks to everyone who came by to spend time at our booth and talk about all the exciting work they’re all getting up to!
It was a beautiful way to celebrate #AstraHouseAutumn, and we look forward to continuing to connect, in-person and online, throughout the season and beyond.